Tuesday, April 01, 2008

My Favorite Fool

April Fool, Sis!!! You probably thought I didn't remember you in my post below. Ha! Joke's on you....you get a post all your own. xxxxoooo

My sister and I are two years apart; I the older. She's a chiropractor now, so I'll refer to her as "Doc." Today is her 33rd birthday. For exactly a month out of each year, I am (in number) three years older than her. I turned 35 at the end of February.

When we were very young, I was certain that my life would have been much better had I been an only child. Here I was, willful and strong-minded, the ruler of my own personal world, and suddenly I was being followed around by a cuter, smaller, less advanced little person who I was expected to treat kindly at all times. This seriously cramped my style. I mostly tried to ignore her, which didn't work out so well. As we grew a little older, I saw the brighter side of the situation. I could boss her around!! This kid would do whatever I said! Sweet.

And did I take advantage of that fact? Did I ever! I was forever having her fetch things for me, ask mom or dad for stuff for me, making her play my games at my discretion. Once I remember as we were bathing together that there was suddenly a brown "floatie" in the bathtub. She knew it wasn't hers; I knew it was mine. And yet I talked her into picking it up and putting it in the toilet for me. I was so naughty.

There was also the advantage of having a handy-dandy full-time scapegoat. Doc got blamed for waaay more stuff than she ever did. Once we were playing and I made her so mad that she said "God Dammit" (at the age of about 6), and I went screaming to mom even as she clamped her hands over her mouth and her big blue eyes filled with tears as she begged me not to tell. I was merciless.

When I was 7 we moved into our new house that my parents had built (really built, not contracted). It had a walk-out basement, a full concrete block wall across the back lower level of the house. The artist in me saw that as a huge blank canvas. One day I found a rust-colored grease pencil leftover from Halloween. I stood and stared at that back wall and really, REALLY wanted to write my name on it. But I knew I'd get in big-time trouble. So I wrote my sister's name, in her handwriting, at her level. Just to seal the deal, I wrote my own name in her handwriting, misspelled with a letter backward. Oh yeah, it looked gooood. And my itch was scratched. When she got blamed, I felt pretty bad....but not bad enough to stick up for her. She took that one for the team too. God love her!

There were many times when we got along fine. We played more barbie games than I can possibly recall. Usually they ended up with the barbies naked or fighting or both, but a good time was had by all. I remember hiding underneath our beds and whispering for what seemed like hours, playing "spy" in our rural neighborhood, digging tunnels in the snow, playing at the creek, and torturing our 2 cats by dressing them up in our doll clothes.

We had to "share" the two other girls in our neighborhood as friends since they were the only other girls we could play with. I remember when we would all ride together in the back of the neighbor lady's stationwagon on the way home from catechism and BEG her to hit the bumps really hard so we would go airborne! We would get each other giggling so hard that we simply couldn't stop. Doc and I excelled at the giggling thing, which was great for long car rides but not so good for church...

As we hit puberty, Doc and I sort of both realized that we could put aside our differences and make the best of it. As we went through high school we began to share our circles of friends, and were really starting to have a blast together as I became a senior then went off to college. She was the only child standing between my folks and an empty nest, so she got a bit more lenient treatment...OK, she got away with WAAAY more stuff than I did, but as I look back I'd have to say she earned it for all the crap I put her through when she was too young to fend for herself!

Doc had a harder time academically with high school than I did, which is not to say she did poorly. Not at all. She just had to work harder at it than I ever did. In the end it served her well. She did great at college (I partied my way through the first 2 years and ended up having to go 5 total to get my BSN). She loved being a student, getting her dietetics degree first, then going on to nursing school, and finally going back to school with her husband and graduating a year ago as a Doctor of Chiropractic. I couldn't have been more proud!! I tear up just thinking about it. Now they have their own practice together, and are making it work for them. We live about 2 hours apart, but still try to talk on the phone when we can. She's busy, I'm busy, but there is that eternal link we share that I cherish so very much.

We have evolved over the years from sibling rivals to sisters to best friends. Who among us can truly say, without reservation, that her sister is her best friend? I am so blessed!! You can't pick your relatives, but you can pick your friends...I picked my relative as my friend too. It's funny, we look sort of alike (except she's thin and I got the big boobs), but if we are both in a room it is so obvious we are sisters; we have almost exactly the same mannerisms: we speak the same, laugh the same, have the same sense of humor, and we both pick at our nails when our hands are idle. It's as close to having a twin as I will ever come...having a person so very like me in this world is a rare blessing indeed.

I love you Dork. Happy Birthday!! ("Normal...") =p


Monnik said...

aw... what a fitting tribute to a great little sister.

You two have made me jealous for, oh, about twenty three years now.

Hope you had a great one, Doc!!

Tiff said...

I have no recollection of the "floatie" incident. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

PS: You made me tear up a little. Ahh, the memories! :-)

krobzoo said...

Yes, I agree - you are alot alike - look alike some, but the mannerisms for sure!!!

Happy Bday Doc!

Debbielou said...

What a great post!!
I too am a "Big sister" , you have brought back loads of memories for me like the time I fed my sister mud pie with worms in the back garden!
We also used to dress up our cat and use her to pull our Sindy along in our home made car ( out of a shoe box).

Happy Birthday !!